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Digital Media Working Academy to develop augmented reality cycling app


The University of Bradford's Digital Media Working Academy is developing a "Pokemon-Go"-style app aimed at Yorkshire's cyclists.

Software developers at the University's in-house production company have teamed up with West Yorkshire's CityConnect cycling improvement scheme to produce the augmented reality app. Cyclists riding on the new "Cycle Superhighway", which links Leeds and Bradford, will be able to use the game-style app during their trip.

CityConnect hopes the app and the segregated, safer superhighways will help encourage more members of the public to cycle, rather than drive, over shorter journeys.

Points for sensible cycling

Features will include explorable points of interest, the highlighting of safety conventions and the awarding of points for sensible cycling. Points will also be deducted if the app detects any reckless or dangerous cycling manoeuvres.

Safety is paramount

Safety concerns have been raised about cyclists engaging with a screen during their journey. Simon Couth, head of the Digital Media Working Academy, believes that the safety of the riders is paramount. "We are working with a simple but secure strap that attaches the phone to the handlebars. Safety is an integral aspect of the app with warnings and safe cycle guidance a part of the gameplay. It's much like people using a screen sat-nav as they drive."

A prototype of the app is scheduled to be showcased at the Cycle City Active City conference, which is hosted by Bradford Council on 11 and 12 May 2017.

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